Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Talking about Twisting Tales

I'm thrilled to be guest blogging at the Indigo Teen Blog today. (For those of you not in Canada, Indigo is the biggest bookseller in Canada.)

The wonderful editors there asked me to talk about the process of updating the fairy tales and adding reader interaction.

I'd love it if you stopped by! Indigo Teen Blog!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Is Hanna YA?

I saw Hanna last week. Definitely a story I wish I'd written. Totally up my alley in terms of the kinds of stories I'm trying to write writing right now....

But it got me thinking about what makes a book or movie Young Adult vs adult. It's not just about the age of the protagonist. I've seen discussions on the topic before that made sense to me and if memory serves the differentiations had to do with the themes explored etc. but I don't think there are any obvious answers. It might be "you know it when you see it" and it might simply be a marketing decision. Some books, like the Harry Potter series and Twilight and The Hunger Games are clearly YA in my mind, but they get read by a ton of adults. But not all YA stories appeal to adults.

And I think with this current "hot trend" in YA a lot of books/stories are being released as YA that five or so years ago would have been published as adult books, regardless of the age of the protagonist.

Some books that come to mind that have kid protagonists but feel more like adult books to me include: Room, and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night, and The Book Thief. I recently bought a new YA, Between Shades of Gray, that I'm really looking forward to reading, and I suspect it might fall into that category, too. Certainly the topic feels adult to me, even though it was on the teen shelf at Indigo. (Thanks to new writer friend, Angela Cerrito, for pointing me to this book. Angela's debut novel The End of the Line has just been released, BTW. Angela's book it has a thirteen y/o protagonist but an adult sounding subject. Cannot WAIT to read.)

But back to Hanna and whether it's YA. I did a post a while back about True Grit and how I thought it was kind of crazy that it was being marketed as an adult Western, with Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon as the stars, when clearly, to me, it was a young adult story with Hailee Steinfeld as its star...

Another book and movie that just sprang to mind is The Lovely Bones. I loved that book. LOVED it. And although the main character was young (and dead) I thought of it as an adult book. But I'll bet if it had been first released now, instead of in 2002, that it would have been released as YA. And they marketed the movie as YA, didn't they? And it kind of bombed as a movie. I admit I haven't seen it, which is shocking because I see a lot (a ton) of films and was really looking forward to that one, until I started hearing negative things. Did they tame it down while trying to make it more of a teen story?? Does anyone know?

And then there's Hanna, with the same wonderful lead actress as The Lovely Bones, Saoirse Ronan. And while this story is clearly about a teen girl, and has fairy tale elements to it... To me it was completely an adult story.

Not sure I fully understand why I think this. Can't wait to discuss.

Anyone else seen Hanna? Thoughts? We've been talking about this over at DWT if you want to join the discussion there.

Friday, April 08, 2011

Another Giveaway!

Today, I'm being interviewed on The Qwillery and giving away another book. Stop by there, if you'd like a chance to win.

And here are photos of a couple more book sightings.

In other news, once a month I meet up with a lovely group of Toronto-(and environs)-based middle grade and young adult writers. We've dubbed ourselves #torkidlit. You can follow us on Twitter or check out our Facebook page.

Torkidlit was started by the lovely and fabulous Claudia Osmond, author of SMUDGE'S MARK, but much of our energy/organization is owed to the equally fabulous author/illustrator Debbie Ohi, also known as Inkygirl.

Debbie made a video this week to show our support for the people of Japan. (Coincidentally, the past several months we've been meeting in a fabulous Japanese restaurant...)

Monday, April 04, 2011

Release -- The Aftermath

So, the books are actually out in the world. For realsies.

You want proof? I'll give you proof.

This is at a local indie bookseller.

Irony is I'd been trying to get up the courage to go into said bookstore and tell them about my books, hoping that they wouldn't just scoff. I never expected to discover they actually had ordered the books and had them on display. On a table!!!

Thanks to SIL Kate for making the discovery and taking the pictures for me. :)

If you're still hoping for a chance to win a book, stop on by the fabulous Claudia Osmond's blog today: Where the (not-so) Wild Things Are. She's having a Maureen McGowan Monday. How awesome is that?

Saturday, April 02, 2011

And the winners are...

The winners of books are:

Marilyn Brant and Lexie@BookBug

The first one to contact me gets first pick on whether she prefers to receive Cinderella: Ninja Warrior or Sleeping Beauty: Vampire Slayer!

Thanks so much to everyone who stopped by to visit this week. You made my release week very special.

And I know I promised some more info about Sleeping Beauty... It's still coming, I promise.

Also, this week I'm going to be visiting some other awesome blogs.

Monday I'll be at: Claudia Osmond's blog

Tuesday I'll be at: Marilyn Brant's Blog (Total coincidence she won a book. I used a random.org. Honest.)
And at:                  Linda Gerber's Blog

Further info about my adventures in blog land will be updated on my Keep in Touch page on this blog and my Page at Get Lost in a Story.

If you didn't win a book this time, there will be more chances!
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